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―Pastor Sam Leonor was raised in Central America where
his parents were part of developing health care missions.
Amo...
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―Sam Leonor loves his work as Pastor to the students
and faculty of La Sierra University. He is passionate
about spi...
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―Michael [Knecht], Tim [Gillespie], Roy [Ice] and Sam [Leonor] all
went to grad school together at a small Universit...
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―They have thrilled audiences that ranged in attendance
from 3 people to 11,000 and venues from barns to stadiums.
BFG ...
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―With performance opportunities trickling in, the group
needed to determine their precise purpose. ‗We knew it had
t...
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―After signing a record deal with True Tunes Rhythm
House, the time commitment and travel increased. They
went al...
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―The Student Association of La Sierra University (SALSU) hosted a
benefit music festival on campus in early March th...
―The things you have described as taking place in Indiana, the Lord
has shown me would take place just before the close of...
―Those participating in the supposed revival receive impressions
which lead them adrift. They cannot tell what they former...
―The Holy Spirit has nothing to do with such a confusion of noise and
multitude of sounds as passed before me last January...
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―Our evening speaker this year for young adults, Sam
Leonor, serves as chaplain at La Sierra University and
pasto...
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―Sam was raised in Central America where his parents were
part of developing church and health care missions. He has...
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―Second, I would like to thank all my brothers and sisters in
my George Fox University‗s Leadership in the Emerging
Cul...
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―Anticipate change. Proactive leadership in Google
Culture with Len Sweet.‖

―The Leadership in Emerging Culture ...
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Advances
―Students participate in three face-to-face 'advance' experiences in
Portland, OR, Oxford, UK, and Orcas Is...
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―In the course of this book‘s retrieval of memory, many
people have helped me find ‗the overgrown path, the secre...
―The Christian church is falling apart and in desperate
need of a revival. According to Professor Sweet and
bestselling au...
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―There are good reasons to be concerned about
contemporary Christianity. But must the answer always be ‗a
fresh alte...
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―Along the way, the authors teeter between sublimity and
absurdity. On the one hand, Sweet and Viola do a terrific j...
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―It is this ecumenical evasiveness that spoils Jesus Manifesto.
The Bible teaches that the Good Shepherd will one da...
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―Can theology get in the way of relationship with Christ?
Absolutely! Is Jesus more than a doctrinal system? Of cour...
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―Adventists Against Prop 8″ is an initiative by a small group of
Adventist pastors, teachers and students in Califor...
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―Lawrence T. Geraty, President Emeritus, La Sierra University
Tim Mitchell, Senior Pastor, Pacific Union College Church...
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―United States District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker overturned
Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v.
Sc...
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―When I came to La Sierra, it was about a month before the elections. In
discussing politics, … they were talking ab...
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―In July 2010, five simple Jesus followers (Alex Bryan, Japhet De
Oliveira, Sam Leonor, Tim Gillespie and Terry Swenson...
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―GODencounters, a series of weekend young adult ‗tune-ups‘ marks a
decade of ministry since the initiative began ...
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―We knew we didn‘t want to perpetuate a faltering program.
We wanted to deepen the devotion of new generations to...
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―When we first started GODencounters, a couple of young
adults who owned an interior design business wanted to
contribu...
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―Encounters Café was invented because our first GODencounters
planning group recognized that the ‗real‘ meeting for you...
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―The 2012 gathering is schedule for August 30 through
September 1 in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas. Organizers
announ...
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“Created by NAD Adventist. Enjoy this musical montage of the 2012
GODencounters Conference: Be Present. Often dis...
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―The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a
great reformation was to take place among Seventh-...
―The things you have described as taking place in
Indiana, the Lord has shown me would take place
just before the close of...
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The emerging church and the one project part 7

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The Emerging Church and The One Project? is a series of PowerPoint presentations asking the question if there is in fact a connection between the two. The purpose of the presentations are not to lambast those who want to lift Jesus up, but rather to allow leaders of the One Project to tell us in their own words (and the words of those promoting the project) what their goals and aspirations really are, and how these goals have been enacted in their past experiences.
Presentation 1 of 10 is a summary of the Emerging Church as defined on Wikipedia. This is a summary of the 17 page article found there which is taken from many leading proponents of the Emerging Church here in America.
Presentations 2 through 4 deal with Leonard Sweet, a leader in the Emerging Church movement and a professor at George Fox University, and many of the nearly 50 books he has authored which express his various viewpoints.
Presentations 5 through 9 deal with the five main leaders of The One Project, four of which graduated with or started DMin degrees from George Fox University under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet. In each presentation an objective look is taken at material in print telling of each leaders work and ministry up to 2012. The question will naturally follow; is this the direction we should be leading our young people in the Adventist Church?
Presentation 10 deals with the One Project gathering in Seattle, February of 2012, looking at the claims of the Project “Jesus. All” and comparing this to what really took place at the gathering. Yes, there was some good points made, and we need to lift Jesus up, but…. We also take a look at a little of the evidence suggesting The One Project is a response to GYC.
For a fully interactive edition of all 10 presentations with video clips, contact: theemergingoneproject@gmail.com

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  • My study into the emerging church started when a pastor back East asked if I knew anything about “The One Project”. When I began to study into the history of the Project and those who started the movement, I was lead to enquire about the Emerging Church and its teachings and history. I found that it deals with much more than just “spiritual formation” and “centering prayer.”
  • We will now take a look at Sam Leonor and his vision for the One Project. De Oliveira states that he and 4 others gathered in Denver and came up with the idea of the One Project. “In July 2010, five simple Jesus followers (Alex Bryan, Japhet De Oliveira, Sam Leonor, Tim Gillespie and Terry Swenson) got together in room 602 at the Holiday Inn in Denver. …” (Japhet De Oliveira, “The One Project: Our Purpose and Mission,” http://the1project.org/assets/documents/the-one-project.pdf)At the same time we must be clear that we not judging the motives or sincere intent of those who sense a need for change in our church, a remedy for the Laodicean condition, but only question if the agenda of the Projects leaders as seen in their history is what our church needs. Pictures taken from the Project web site.http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795283853&k=gjpj2p5http://the1project.smugmug.com/Gatherings/Seattle/22409901_rhnMRf#!i=1795283880&k=42Q72q2&lb=1&s=X2
  • Sam Leonor is La Sierra University Church pastor and campus chaplain. He has been there since 2002-2003.He is married to Shelley Campbell. They have two children, Alexandra (born in 2000), and a son, Micah (born in 2003).(http://www.lasierra.edu/index.php?id=555)
  • Although Sam Leonor has some excellent sounding stated goals and has encouraged many students to get involved in “missions”, how have these goals written above played out in his pastoral history?
  • Although Sam Leonor has some excellent sounding stated goals and has encouraged many students to get involved in “missions”, how have these goals written above played out in his pastoral history?The One project website offers some insights on Leonor’s goals and passion. (http://the1project.org/board/sam.html)
  • Although Sam Leonor has some excellent sounding stated goals and has encouraged many students to get involved in “missions”, how have these goals written above played out in his pastoral history?What do we mean by good conversations and making music?
  • Big Face Grace started while Sam Leonor was at Andrews University in the Seminary. This is a Biography of Big Face Grace with a photo of their band in the early days. This was probably written in the early 2000s.(http://www.esongs.net/biography.asp?ID=441)
  • Big Face Grace started while Sam Leonor was at Andrews University in the Seminary. This is a Biography of Big Face Grace with a photo of their band in the early days. This was probably written in the early 2000s.4 of 5 original band members are currently pastors in the Adventist Church. Jason Hutchinson (guitars), Roy Ice (drums/vocals) Pacific Union College Associate Pastor and College Chaplain; Sam Leonor (bass/vocals) now La Sierra University Pastor; Michael Knecht (guitars) Pastor at Crosswalk SDA Church Redlands, CA; Tim Gillespie (vocals), now Loma Linda University Youth Pastor.
  • Big Face Grace started while Sam Leonorwas at Andrews University in the Seminary. This is a Biography of Big Face Grace with a photo of their band in the early days. This was probably written in the early 2000s.4 of 5 original band members are currently pastors in the Adventist Church. Jason Hutchinson (guitars), Roy Ice (drums/vocals) Pacific Union College Associate Pastor and College Chaplain; Sam Leonor (bass/vocals) now La Sierra University Pastor; Michael Knecht (guitars) Pastor at Crosswalk SDA Church Redlands, CA; Tim Gillespie (vocals), now Loma Linda University Youth Pastor. In 2004 as the group got more popular they decided to disband except for occasional gigs.
  • Roy Ice (drummer of Big Face Grace) was Pacific Union College Chaplainand Associate Pastor when this article was run on PUC web site in 2010. He has also served as COR Coach and Chaplain at Center for Youth Evangelism, Youth Pastor at Azure Hills SDA Church, and is now the Executive Pastor at Napa Adventist Church in 2012. He will also be speaking at the February 2013 One Project Chicago gathering. (http://www.puc.edu/faculty-staff/progress/archives-old/june-2010)
  • Roy Ice (drummer of Big Face Grace) was Pacific Union College Chaplain and Associate Pastor when this article was run on PUC web site in 2010. Obviously not everyone was happy about the band Big Face Grace yet one of their goals was to “provoked discussion” by their music. Is this the same goal as having a “conversation” as defined by the Emerging church movement. Is this one of their goals with The One Project? 4 of 5 original band members are currently pastors in the Adventist Church. Jason Hutchinson (guitars), Roy Ice (drums/vocals) now Pacific Union College Associate Pastor and College Chaplain; Sam Leonor (bass/vocals) now La Sierra University Pastor; Michael Knecht (guitars) now at Crosswalk SDA Church Redlands, CA; Tim Gillespie (vocals), now Loma Linda University Youth Pastor. (http://www.puc.edu/faculty-staff/progress/archives-old/june-2010)
  • Roy Ice (drummer of Big Face Grace) was Pacific Union College Chaplain and Associate Pastor when this article was run on PUC web site in 2010. A “Seventh-day Adventist” band that is better than Bon Jovi, with remixed dance music, can praise the Lord, especially because they helped “generating discussion” and broke down barriers in the church throughout North American Division, England and Australia? 4 of 5 original band members are currently pastors in the Adventist Church. Jason Hutchinson (guitars), Roy Ice (drums/vocals) now Pacific Union College Associate Pastor and College Chaplain; Sam Leonor (bass/vocals) now La Sierra University Pastor; Michael Knecht (guitars) now at Crosswalk SDA Church Redlands, CA; Tim Gillespie (vocals), now Loma Linda University Youth Pastor.
  • Since Sam Leonor feels that Adventism is “constipated” in regard to its worship he has had opportunity through Big Face Grace, since its inception, to share its music as one of the modes of generating discussion and in presenting the unconstipated “gospel” message. Several of the One Project organizers, including Sam Leonor and Tim Gillespie have participated in this vision. On March 14, 2009, Big Face Grace performed on the La Sierra University campus for the purpose of raising funds for missions. No doubt Sam Leonor played a part in getting the band to participate with several other bands for this “fund raiser”.http://www.myspace.com/bigfacegrace/photos/16801145#{%22ImageId%22%3A16801145}http://www.myspace.com/bigfacegrace/photos/16801145#{%22ImageId%22%3A27041451} http://www.myspace.com/bigfacegrace/photos/16801145#{%22ImageId%22%3A17549197}
  • On March 14, 2009, Big Face Grace performed on the La Sierra’s University campus for the purpose of raising funds for missions. La Sierra University posted an article about the event in April, 2009. (http://www.lasierra.edu/index.php?id=1604)
  • On March 14, 2009, Big Face Grace performed on the La Sierra’s University campus for the purpose of raising funds for missions. La Sierra University posted an article about the event in April, 2009.
  • This is taken from a letter of response written by Ellen White to S. N. Haskell, who upon returning from India found all kinds of fanaticism coming into Adventism and wrote to Ellen White about his concerns. (Ellen G. White to S. N. Haskell, Letter 132, 1900; in Selected Messages, book 2, pp. 36-39) Details of Fanaticism found in Selected Messages , book 2, p. 31:“[A FANATICAL TEACHING TERMED "THE DOCTRINE OF HOLY FLESH" WAS STARTED IN 1900 IN INDIANA, LEADING THE CONFERENCE PRESIDENT AND VARIOUS WORKERS INTO SERIOUS ERROR. THIS THEORY ALLEGED THAT THOSE WHO FOLLOW THE SAVIOUR MUST HAVE THEIR FALLEN NATURES PERFECTED BY PASSING THROUGH A "GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE" EXPERIENCE, THUS ACQUIRING A STATE OF PHYSICAL SINLESSNESS AS AN ESSENTIAL PREPARATION FOR TRANSLATION. EYEWITNESS ACCOUNTS REPORT THAT IN THEIR SERVICES THE FANATICS WORKED UP A HIGH PITCH OF EXCITEMENT BY USE OF MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS SUCH AS ORGANS, FLUTES, FIDDLES, TAMBOURINES, HORNS, AND EVEN A BIG BASS DRUM. THEY SOUGHT A PHYSICAL DEMONSTRATION AND SHOUTED AND PRAYED AND SANG UNTIL SOMEONE IN THE CONGREGATION WOULD FALL, PROSTRATE AND UNCONSCIOUS, FROM HIS SEAT. ONE OR TWO MEN, WALKING UP AND DOWN THE AISLE FOR THE PURPOSE, WOULD DRAG THE FALLEN PERSON UP ON THE ROSTRUM. THEN ABOUT A DOZEN INDIVIDUALS WOULD GATHER AROUND THE PROSTRATE BODY, SOME SINGING, SOME SHOUTING, AND SOME PRAYING, ALL AT THE SAME TIME. WHEN THE SUBJECT REVIVED, HE WAS COUNTED AMONG THOSE WHO HAD PASSED THROUGH THE GETHSEMANE EXPERIENCE, HAD OBTAINED HOLY FLESH, AND HAD TRANSLATION FAITH. THEREAFTER, IT WAS ASSERTED, HE COULD NOT SIN AND WOULD NEVER DIE. ELDERS S. N. HASKELL AND A. J. BREED, TWO OF OUR LEADING DENOMINATIONAL MINISTERS, WERE SENT TO THE CAMP MEETING HELD AT MUNCIE, INDIANA, FROM SEPTEMBER 13 TO 23, 1900, TO MEET THIS FANATICISM. THESE DEVELOPMENTS WERE REVEALED TO MRS. WHITE WHILE SHE WAS IN AUSTRALIA IN JANUARY, 1900, AND SHE BORE TESTIMONY OF WARNING AND REPROOF AGAINST IT, AS SEEN IN THE TWO FOLLOWING MESSAGES.--COMPILERS.]
  • This is taken from a letter of response written by Ellen White to S. N. Haskell, who upon returning from India found all kinds of fanaticism coming into Adventism and wrote to Ellen White about his concerns. (Ellen G. White to S. N. Haskell, Letter 132, 1900; in Selected Messages, book 2, pp. 36-39)
  • This is taken from a letter of response written by Ellen White to S. N. Haskell, who upon returning from India found all kinds of fanaticism coming into Adventism and wrote to Ellen White about his concerns. (Ellen G. White to S. N. Haskell, Letter 132, 1900; in Selected Messages, book 2, pp. 36-39)
  • Sam Leonor was joined by Alex Bryan at the North Carolina Camp meeting, May 28 – June 3, 2006 (Alex was then no longer a denominational pastor due to his church plant’s separation from the Georgia Cumberland Conference, although nothing was stated in the Campmeeting brochure). Both Alex and Sam led out in the Young Adults meetings. Notice Leonor’s presentation titles. (http://www.carolinasda.org/site_data/663/assets/0007/4106/CMProgram06.pdf)
  • Sam Leonor was joined by Alex Bryan at the North Carolina Camp meeting, May 28 – June 3, 2006. They led out in the Young Adults meetings. At that time Alex was no longer a denominational pastor due to his church plant’s separation from the Georgia Cumberland Conference, although nothing was stated in the Campmeeting brochure, and he was no longer being published in the Adventist Review. Seems to be deceptive advertising for the meetings. The Titles of Sam Leonor’s talks are interesting but troubling. (http://www.carolinasda.org/site_data/663/assets/0007/4106/CMProgram06.pdf)
  • Both on the One Project web site and in an Adventist Today article Leonor is mentioned as currently attending George Fox for his Doctor of Ministry degree. What both web sites fail to mention is that Leonor’s doctoral degree is under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet and in area of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or the Future Studies doctoral program.(http://the1project.org/board/sam.html)(http://www.atoday.org/article/1302/news/july-headlines/god-encounters-2012-conference-for-young-adults-will-feature-sam-leonor)
  • Both on the One Project web site and in an Adventist Today article Leonor is mentioned as currently attending George Fox for his Doctor of Ministry degree. What both web sites fail to mention is that Leonor’s doctoral degree is under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet and in area of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or the Future Studies doctoral program.
  • In a George Fox University Dissertation by John O’Keefe, Leonor is mentioned as a fellow cohort attending George Fox for his Doctor of Ministry degree on the subject of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or Future Studies doctoral program.(http://johncokeefe.com/John%20C%20OKeefe%20-%20Creatives.pdf)
  • In a George Fox University Dissertation by John O’Keefe, Sam Leonor is mentioned as a fellow cohort attending George Fox for his Doctor of Ministry degree on the subject of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or the Future Studies doctoral program.Notice further what John O’Keefe suggests is the “problem” and the “claim” in his dissertation (See Below). This is the same Emerging Church rhetoric that Sweet and others have been pumping into the “Christian” America landscape for 20 years. “Problem:Generally speaking, the biggest problem facing the Church1 today lies in its inability to understand the current cultural shifts taking place in the world around us and how best to lead in that shift. This inability stems from the Church‘s desire to rest its theology, structure, vision and, most importantly, leadership, in the past and its inability to understand and live in the present/future.Claim:For the Church to reach a 21st century mind we need to stop looking to the past to define what we are not, and look to the now and future to express who we are.2 The Churches‘ desire to resist change and focus strictly on what has been successful in the past is not working any more.” (John O’Keefe, Dissertation, p. iv)
  • Review from presentation number 4: Sam Leonor is attending George Fox University for his Doctor of Ministry degree on the subject of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or Future Studies doctoral program.“The Semiotics & Future Studies” is the same as “The Leadership in Emerging Culture Doctor of Ministry.” This course is offered under the direct tutelage or mentorship of Leonard Sweet. Leonard Sweet is “Currently the E. Stanley Jones Professor of Evangelism at Drew University, Madison, NJ and a Visiting Distinguished Professor at George Fox University, Portland, Oregon,…”George Fox University which was founded by Quakers in 1885 and is located in Newberg Oregon, and has centers in Portland, Salem and Bosie ID. In 1996, the college merged with Western Evangelical Seminary to form George Fox University. Notable graduates includeRichard Foster, and Dan Kimball, both big names in Emerging Church movement.Doctor of MinistryGeorge Fox offers 3 Doctor of Ministry programs:DMin in Leadership and Global PerspectivesDMin in Leadership and Spiritual FormationDMin in Semiotics and Future Studies ( or The Leadership in Emerging Culture Doctor of Ministry)
  • Review from presentation number 4: Sam Leonor is attending George Fox University for his Doctor of Ministry degree on the subject of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or Future Studies doctoral program, which is under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet.Notice carefully the official George Fox University statement of what this program is all about (especially the APC to MRI change in ministry focus). We will see below how Sam Leonor has incorporated many of these themes in his current youth ministry at La Seirra University. The Leadership in Emerging Culture Doctor of Ministry (DMin), another name for Semiotics and Future Studies, is led by Leonard Sweet. “Anticipate Change” is the heading on the web listing of this course. Definition of SEMIOTICS: “a general philosophical theory of signs and symbols.” Leonard Sweet has been the primary person to make this word popular in the Emerging Church movement. He states that he bases it on Mat 16:3 “He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” The Greek word is “sēmeion” which means: “an indication, especially ceremonially or supernaturally: - miracle, sign, token, wonder.” Sweet seems to use it as a term that describes himself and his cohorts and followers, who can see the signs in different religions, cultures and histories.
  • Review from presentation number 4: Sam Leonor is attending George Fox University for his Doctor of Ministry degree on the subject of Leadership in the Emerging Culture or Future Studies doctoral program, which is under the mentorship of Leonard Sweet.Notice carefully the official George Fox University statement of what this program is all about (especially the APC to MRI change in ministry focus). We will see below how Sam Leonor has incorporated many of these themes in his current youth ministry at La Sierra University. This course is directly guided by Leonard Sweet and obvious an outlet for all his Emerging Church ideas, not just “spiritual formation”. It is stated that “students … receive personal mentoring from Dr. Sweet.” Thus Sweet is Sam Leonor’s “mentor” in his doctoral program which will last three years.
  • George Fox University posted pictures from one of the Learning Sessions in Portland with “lead mentor” Leonard Sweet. This was during the 2008/2009 school year. Pictures are from August 27 and 28, 2008, Orientation Advance. Tim Gillespie is also in one of the photos. Inset makes it very clear that Sweet is the “Lead mentor.”
  • Leonard Sweet mentions in his acknowledgements in the book, So Beautiful: Divine Design for Life and the Church (Printed 2009), those who have been helpful in guiding his thoughts and ideas for this particular book. Acknowledgements were written Dec. 25, 2008, in which he mentions Sam Leonor as one of his students. Yet some are still claiming that Sweet was and is not a mentor to One Project leaders. (http://www.scribd.com/doc/13828591/9/My-characters-all-sound-the-same-because-I-never-listen-%E2%80%9D2)
  • Leonard Sweet mentions in his acknowledgements in the book, So Beautiful: Divine Design for Life and the Church (Printed 2009), those who have been helpful in guiding his thoughts and ideas for this particular book. Acknowledgements were written Dec. 25, 2008, in which he mentions Sam Leonor as one of his students. Yet some are still claiming that Sweet was and is not a mentor to One Project leaders.
  • Leonard Sweet’s book Jesus Manifesto, expresses many Emerging Church ideas. Amazon.com lists an official Editorial Review for this book which makes it clear the book has, among other problems, pantheistic leanings. (These next 5 slides are a repeat from presentation 3). We are not suggesting that Leonor is teaching pantheism himself, but that he seems to be promoting material that has these leanings.
  • Unsolicited review on Amazon.com by Michael Duran, which summarizes what many others have also said about Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola’s book Jesus Manifesto. (This is a repeat from presentation 3). We are not suggesting that Leonor is teaching pantheism himself, but that he seems to be promoting material that has these leanings.
  • Unsolicited review on Amazon.com by Michael Duran, which summarizes what many others have also said about Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola’s book Jesus Manifesto. (This is a repeat from presentation 3). We are not suggesting that Leonor is teaching pantheism himself, but that he seems to be promoting material that has these leanings. Often it is not what a person says that is so wrong as what a person fails to say or include when describing the plan of salvation. Half the story or half truth is worse than blatant error because it is more subtle.
  • Unsolicited review on Amazon.com by Michael Duran, which summarizes what many others have also said about Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola’s book Jesus Manifesto. (This is a repeat from presentation 3). We are not suggesting that Leonor is teaching pantheism himself, but that he seems to be promoting material that has these leanings.
  • Unsolicited review on Amazon.com by Michael Duran, which summarizes what many others have also said about Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola’s book Jesus Manifesto. (This is a repeat from presentation 3). We are not suggesting that Leonor is teaching pantheism himself, but that he seems to be promoting material that has these leanings.
  • Proposition 8 was a California ballot proposition and a state constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 state elections. The measure added a new provision, Section 7.5 of the Declaration of Rights, to the California Constitution, which provides that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” Six (progressive) Adventists started an unofficial campaign against Proposition 8 (before it was voted on in Nov. 2008), claiming that the Proposition took away equal rights for homosexuals and was against the Adventists Church’s stance on religious liberty. Other Adventist supported Prop. 8 and the protection of family values in the U.S. We would not suggest that Adventist should take an unloving attitude toward homosexuals but one that is redemptive. However, we ask if Adventist should be joining the politically driven homosexual movement in the U.S. under the claim of religious liberty? United States District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker overturned Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger, ruling that it violated both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the United States Constitution. Walker issued an injunction against enforcing Proposition 8 and a stay to determine suspension of his ruling pending appeal. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals continued the stay, keeping Walker's ruling on hold pending appeal. On February 7, 2012, in a 2–1 decision, a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed Walker's decision declaring the Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8)
  • Six (progressive) Adventists started an unofficial campaign against Proposition 8 (before it was voted on in Nov. 2008), claiming that this took away equal rights for homosexuals and was against the Adventists Church’s stance on religious liberty. Proposition 8 was a California ballot proposition and a state constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 state elections. The measure added a new provision, Section 7.5 of the Declaration of Rights, to the California Constitution, which provides that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.”United States District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker overturned Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger, ruling that it violated both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the United States Constitution. Walker issued an injunction against enforcing Proposition 8 and a stay to determine suspension of his ruling pending appeal.The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals continued the stay, keeping Walker's ruling on hold pending appeal. On February 7, 2012, in a 2–1 decision, a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed Walker's decision declaring the Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8)
  • Many other progressive Adventists pastors and educators joined in support of this campaign including Sam Leonor. Proposition 8 was a California ballot proposition and a state constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 state elections. The measure added a new provision, Section 7.5 of the Declaration of Rights, to the California Constitution, which provides that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.”United States District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker overturned Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger, ruling that it violated both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the United States Constitution. Walker issued an injunction against enforcing Proposition 8 and a stay to determine suspension of his ruling pending appeal.The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals continued the stay, keeping Walker's ruling on hold pending appeal. On February 7, 2012, in a 2–1 decision, a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed Walker's decision declaring the Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8)
  • After the Proposition was passed, a District Court Judge overturned it, an action which “Adventists Against Proposition 8” praised. Proposition 8 was a California ballot proposition and a state constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 state elections. The measure added a new provision, Section 7.5 of the Declaration of Rights, to the California Constitution, which provides that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.”(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8)
  • In this Spectrum article, Matt Burdette expresses the difference between his educational experience at Southern Adventist University and La Sierra University, and compares their faculty members, including Sam Leonor, based on the response to Prop. 8 and the homosexual movement. “Stepping out of the Collegedale bubble into a larger, more diverse one here in Riverside has enabled me to look back on my experience at Southern with better understanding than I had when I was there; likewise, coming from SAU has helped me to discern the different approach that La Sierra University has taken.” (http://spectrummagazine.org/blog/2009/03/15/student-series-homosexuality-and-adventist-campus-la-sierra)
  • In this Spectrum article, Matt Burdette expresses the difference between his educational experience at Southern Adventist University and La Sierra University, and compares their faculty members, including Sam Leonor, based on the response to Prop. 8 and the homosexual movement. Although this does not indicate fully what Sam Leonor’s views might be, it does indicate at least his progressive leanings and his participation in this type of “dialogue”. Some involved in this dialogue seem to support fully the homosexual movement and openly condemn the biblical description of such practices being “sinful”.
  • (Review Slide from presentation 5). It was in the summer of 2010 that Sam Leonor and four other youth leaders met in Denver to ultimately plan The One Project. Yet, as we mentioned before, they were all obviously tired of “fighting battles.” The question is whether they were fighting the right battles, or rather fighting their own battles, some which appear to be against the foundational principles of the SDA church, which was built on something other than false Emerging Church principles. The last two paragraphs are taken from Terry Swenson’s talk in Atlanta, on Feb. 8, 2011 during the first large Project Gathering, we can gather that there were other past issues, battles and dreams that drove these men together to refocus their lives and their ministry. Although obviously very sincere we might wonder what battles they were tired of fighting. Was it battles over Prop. 8, or music and worship?
  • We will now take a look at Sam Leonor’s connection with God Encounters, an “independent” SDA youth ministry now in its 10th year. These are several web shots of advertisements for God Encounter weekends and articles about its origins and future plans:(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqCHo23R-As)(http://wgts.org/god-encounters/) Some of the promotional photos depict poses similar if not the same as Yoga positions. (http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters#!/GODencounters/photos_stream)(http://auyouth.com/YoungAdults/god-encounters/)(http://vimeo.com/channels/godencounters)(http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com/2012/09/05/godencounters-still-strong-after-a-decade/)(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters)(http://news.adventist.org/en/archive/articles/2012/03/09/godencounters-marks-decade-of-young-adult-ministry)
  • AS a side note, some of the promotional material for God Encounters depicts poses that are very similar if not the same the Locust Yoga position. This picture demonstrates the Full Locust position: “Full locust is one of the most difficult postures to improve in the Bikram Yoga series.” (http://bikramyogaguelph.blogspot.com/2012/03/full-locust-pose-poorna-salabhasana.html) Although there are benefits to stretches, and strengthening exercises, done in the context of Yoga it is a dangerous dabbling in eastern religion. “When this Yoga pose is demonstrated it resembles a locust (grasshopper) moving its rear ends up and down, hence the name. Locust is one of the backward bend asanas usually performed in a sequence; first the Yoga pose Cobra is practiced, than the Locust followed by the Yoga pose Bow. Locust is a posture which turns the body out expanding the chest to face the world. It is a very stimulating, powerful and dynamic asana, one of the most demanding but also one of the most unnatural posture in Hatha yoga.” (http://www.emaxhealth.com/62/7127.html)
  • We will now take a look at Sam Leonor’s connection with God Encounters, an “independent” SDA youth ministry now in its 10th year. This is a history of the God Encounters movement taken from an Adventist News article.
  • This history of God Encounters is taken from the “ignitionblog”.
  • God encounters and prayer rooms. Although we would encourage a deeper life of prayer, some of the prayer practices appear to be taken from mystical forms of eastern religions.
  • God encounters and prayer rooms. Although we would encourage a deeper life of prayer, some of the prayer practices are being taken from mystical forms of eastern religions. (http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com/2008/04/30/encountering-god-making-room/)(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos#!/photo.php?fbid=125924277513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353542791&type=3&theater)(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos#!/photo.php?fbid=125889612513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353542807&type=3&theater)(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos#!/photo.php?fbid=125875917513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353542812&type=3&theater)(http://ignitionblog. wordpress.com /2012/09/05/godencounters-still-strong-after-a-decade/)
  • Encounters Café are associated with the Godencounter weekends to help further the ministries agenda to reach out to young people. Is this true worship?
  • Encounters Café are associated with the Godencounter weekends to help further the ministries agenda to reach out to young people. Is this true worship?(http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com/2008/03/29/encounters-cafe/)
  • From the very beginning of Godencounters, modern rock music has been used as a means of “worship” and to attract young people. But with each passing year the “worship” has taken on more of an entertainment flavor with the appearance of seeking solely an emotional experience of God. (http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos#!/photo.php?fbid=125835972513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353549987&type=3&theater) 2002 Encounters(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125866117513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551181&type=3&theater) Florida 2004 Encounters, notice drum set on stage.(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125878192513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551168&type=3&theater) Florida 2005 Encounters(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125889137513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551143&type=3&theater) Florida 2006 Encounters (5 pictures)(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125919952513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551946&type=3&theater) Florida 2008 Encounters (http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125924137513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551938&type=3&theater) 2008 Georgia Encounters(http://www.flickr.com/photos/vivamex/sets/72157627709599612/)Arlington Tx 2012 Encounters (11 pictures)
  • Sam Leonor has been the key speaker for God Encounter weekends on several occasions. In 2012 the God Encounters weekend was held at the Arlington Younger Generation Church where God Encounter’s co-founder A. Allan Martin pastors, and Sam Leonor was once again picked as the key speaker. Adventist Today announced this in July 2012. (http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125875872513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353556164&type=3&theater) 2005 Florida Encounters(http://www.facebook.com/GODencounters/photos_stream#!/photo.php?fbid=125924177513&set=pb.105031787513.-2207520000.1353551932&type=3&theater) 2008 Georgia Encounters(http://www.atoday.org/article/1302/news/july-headlines/god-encounters-2012-conference-for-young-adults-will-feature-sam-leonor) 2012 Arlington Texas Encounters
  • Sam Leonor has been the key speaker for God Encounter weekends on several occasions. In 2012 the God Encounters weekend was held at the Arlington Younger Generation Church where co-founder A. Allan Martin is pastor. Sam Leonor was once again picked as the key speaker. This taken from the Adventist Today article.
  • The theme for 2012 was “Be Present: where you are”. This is defined more in the post video production after the conference (see video clip next slide).Sam Leonor has been the key speaker for God Encounter weekends on several occasions. In 2012 the God Encounters weekend was held at the Arlington Younger Generation Church where co-founder A. Allan Martin is pastor. Sam Leonor was once again picked as the key speaker.
  • The video in the previous slide is taken from this Godencounters.org web site. It is stated that the site was created by NAD Adventists. There are also other claims made about the Godencounter’s movement.
  • The video in the previous slide is taken from the Godencounters.org web site. It is stated that the site was created by NAD Adventists. There are also other claims made about the Godencounter’s movement.
  • Sam Leonor is one of several who started the One Project. Their claim is that its all about Jesus. Jesus. All. But has Sam Leonor’s past worship experience demonstrated that this is the case? Is the One Project really about making Jesus supreme, or about creating another avenue through which the leader’s agenda can be brought about in the church (primarily marketed to our young people through our Universities)?At the same time we must be clear that we not judging the motives or sincere intent of those who sense a need for change in our church, a remedy for the Laodicean condition, but only question if the agenda of the Projects leaders as seen in their history is what our church needs.
  • Is the One Project really the reformation that we need in our church (we do need one)? Based on the backgrounds of the Project leaders what will be the result of the influence of this Project on our young people through our Universities?
  • We will look at another One Project planner, Tim Gillespie, in our next presentation.
  • The emerging church and the one project part 7

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    4. 4.   ―Pastor Sam Leonor was raised in Central America where his parents were part of developing health care missions. Among others, he attended Southern College in TN, where he earned a secondary education degree. He worked as a youth pastor in Asheville, NC before attending Andrews University where he earned a Master of Divinity. …‖ Sam has a passion for making church life meaningful. He wants to see people attach themselves to communities of faith that are healthy, growing and full of love. He believes that, like the Apostle Paul, people can experience dramatic personal change when they come in contact with the Gospel. This happens when Jesus the Christ and His teachings are lived out through the body of Christ. He is devoted to the Adventist church and to exploring contemporary Biblical spirituality. He enjoys ministry that focuses on faith that engages culture deeply and emphasizes justice.‖ (http://www.lasierra.edu/index.php?id=555) 4
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    6. 6.   ―Sam Leonor loves his work as Pastor to the students and faculty of La Sierra University. He is passionate about spiritual awakening among young adults, especially college students. He loves to see them bloom into faith that is missional, growing and full of love. His ministry is marked by a call to radical faith in Jesus. He loves finding ways to engage culture deeply for the sake of Jesus.‖ ―His hobbies include making music, eating good food, and having good conversations with family and friends.‖ (http://the1project.org/board/sam.html) 6
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    8. 8.   ―Michael [Knecht], Tim [Gillespie], Roy [Ice] and Sam [Leonor] all went to grad school together at a small University in southwest Michigan [Andrews University]. They worked together on many different projects, but music was a priority to all of them. Michael, had been asked to organize the music for a community event targeted toward teenagers. Michael played guitar, Tim sang and Roy played the drums. The crowd went wild. The chemistry was incredible and the musical relationship continued. There were folk influences in the music, but the cohesiveness of the group soon yielded an eclectic yet distinct style.‖ ―The newly formed band added Sam as bass player and Jason, an undergrad at the University, as another guitarist. They quickly began booking gigs, however, had yet to decide on a name. The first name settled on was ‗the electric fishermen,‘ which lasted about as long as their first concert. They quickly changed their name to ‗Big Face Grace‘ and it worked. The adventure had begun. BFG has now toured Australia, Finland, much of North America and parts of Canada.― cont. 8
    9. 9.  ―They have thrilled audiences that ranged in attendance from 3 people to 11,000 and venues from barns to stadiums. BFG music has been featured on MTV's Road Rules and ABC's Making the Band. Their CDs sound great, but to really experience BFG you must see, hear and live their live show. Big Face Grace is currently spending the majority of their time writing and recording for their long-awaited new album. They are also involved in several preliminary film negotiations. During this time, they will be playing a few select national dates and various Southern California shows ONLY. When the album is completed and released, BFG plans to book a national promotional tour.‖ (http://www.esongs.net/biography.asp?ID=441) 9
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    11. 11.   ―With performance opportunities trickling in, the group needed to determine their precise purpose. ‗We knew it had to be more than just entertainment,‘ Ice says. Recent studies had revealed teenagers' difficulty understanding God's grace, and they felt convicted to bridge the gap. Helping young people understand the nature of grace became the message of their music. With that also came a new band name: Big Face Grace. …‖ ―Following [AU] graduation, their prominence grew and so did controversy. Acceptance from the Adventist church was not immediate, and many in the Midwest were unreceptive to the concept of being both contemporary and Christian. Big Face Grace was aware, and, rather than avoid the tension, made it their secondary goal to provoke discussion of whether God allowed for such a blend. Ice remembers staying focused on their purpose. ‗I thought, ―My job is not to create controversy, it's to create Christians.‖‘‖ (cont.) 11
    12. 12.    ―After signing a record deal with True Tunes Rhythm House, the time commitment and travel increased. They went all over the United States and Canada, including several appearances at Spirit West Coast, and did two separate three-week tours in Australia. Following a twoweek tour in Finland, one entertainment reviewer wrote that after watching Bon Jovi perform two days earlier, Big Face Grace was a better show.‖ ―Several of their songs reached the top ten of the Christian music charts, including one number one hit. One of their songs reached the charts after their producer made it into, of all things, a dance remix. BFG was unaware of the song's success until they saw it in a Christian music magazine.‖ ―[Roy] Ice's time as the talented drummer of Big Face Grace will always bring a smile to his face, and a moment of pride. ‗My proudest moments aren't the hits or a song solo or a place we performed,‘ Ice remarks, ‗I'm most proud of the fact that we generated discussion. I feel like we made a difference.‘― (http://www.puc.edu/faculty-staff/progress/archives-old/june-2010) 12
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    17. 17.   ―The Student Association of La Sierra University (SALSU) hosted a benefit music festival on campus in early March that raised more than $2,800 for a struggling Adventist school in Malawi, Africa. … The La Sierra music festival featured five stages with multiple performers at each stage. Each of the more than 250 attendees of the concert donated $5 in order to get into each stage or $10 to attend for all festival access. Volunteer students roamed the event carrying buckets in which people could make additional donations. These buckets raised $966.71.‖ ―The festival featured a reunion performance by Big Face Grace, a Christian music group formed at Andrews University in the 1990s. Sam Leonor, La Sierra University campus pastor and a member of Big Face Grace at Andrews, was joined by the rest BFG‘s members for the La Sierra event. Four of the group are now active pastors involved in college/youth/young adult ministries. … Other performers included Nick Zork, Gian Caballero, Cartero, Iguana Stu, Miracle Dolls, The Transfats, Off Track, Sal and Isela, Vedda, Who is Chuy Vega, Winston and the Telescreen, Aaron Roche, Aaron Beaumont, Deirdre Raymond and Soul of the River. All of the students and performers volunteered their time and energy.‖ (http://www.lasierra.edu/index.php?id=1604) 17
    18. 18. ―The things you have described as taking place in Indiana, the Lord has shown me would take place just before the close of probation. Every uncouth thing will be demonstrated. There will be shouting, with drums, music, and dancing. The senses of rational beings will become so confused that they cannot be trusted to make right decisions. And this is called the moving of the Holy Spirit.‖ ―The Holy Spirit never reveals itself in such methods, in such a bedlam of noise. This is an invention of Satan to cover up his ingenious methods for making of none effect the pure, sincere, elevating, ennobling, sanctifying truth for this time. Better never have the worship of God blended with music than to use musical instruments to do the work which last January was represented to me would be brought into our camp meetings. The truth for this time needs nothing of this kind in its work of converting souls. A bedlam of noise shocks the senses and perverts that which if conducted aright might be a blessing. The powers of satanic agencies blend with the din and noise, to have a carnival, and this is termed the Holy Spirit's working.‖ (cont.) 18
    19. 19. ―Those participating in the supposed revival receive impressions which lead them adrift. They cannot tell what they formerly knew regarding Bible principles. No encouragement should be given to this kind of worship. The same kind of influence came in after the passing of the time in 1844. The same kind of representations were made. Men became excited, and were worked by a power thought to be the power of God.... ‖ ―I will not go into all the painful history; it is too much. But last January [1900] the Lord showed me that erroneous theories and methods would be brought into our camp meetings, and that the history of the past would be repeated. I felt greatly distressed. I was instructed to say that at these demonstrations demons in the form of men are present, working with all the ingenuity that Satan can employ to make the truth disgusting to sensible people; that the enemy was trying to arrange matters so that the camp meetings, which have been the means of bringing the truth of the third angel's message before multitudes, should lose their force and influence. …‖(cont.) 19
    20. 20. ―The Holy Spirit has nothing to do with such a confusion of noise and multitude of sounds as passed before me last January. Satan works amid the din and confusion of such music, which, properly conducted, would be a praise and glory to God. He makes its effect like the poison sting of the serpent.‖ ―Those things which have been in the past will be in the future. Satan will make music a snare by the way in which it is conducted. God calls upon His people, who have the light before them in the Word and in the Testimonies, to read and consider, and to take heed. Clear and definite instruction has been given in order that all may understand. But the itching desire to originate something new results in strange doctrines, and largely destroys the influence of those who would be a power for good if they held firm the beginning of their confidence in the truth the Lord had given them.” (Ellen G. White to S. N. Haskell, Letter 132, 1900; in Selected Messages, book 2, pp. 36-39) 20
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    22. 22.    ―Our evening speaker this year for young adults, Sam Leonor, serves as chaplain at La Sierra University and pastors the first service of the University Church. His ministry focuses on faith that deeply engages culture, is driven by a desire to love as Jesus did and emphasizes justice. …‖ ―Alex Bryan, a graduate of Southern College and Andrews University, is pastor of the New Community Church in Roswell, Georgia. Alex is a regular contributor to the Adventist Review, and has co-authored a book entitled, The Ride of Your Life.‖ Titles: ―Why it‘s ok to watch movies: Learning the lost art of Discernment ― ―Learning from Legalists: Why the law will always matter‖ ―Learning from Liberals: Why the edges must be explored‖ ―Jesus was a Moderate: Reclaiming the progressive middle‖ ―Starting Riots for Jesus: What the committed life really looks like‖ (http://www.carolinasda.org/site_data/ 663/assets/0007/4106/CMProgram06.pdf) 22
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    24. 24.   ―Sam was raised in Central America where his parents were part of developing church and health care missions. He has degrees from Southern Adventist University, Andrews University, and is a doctoral candidate at George Fox University.‖ (http://the1project.org/board/sam.html) ―He graduated from Southwestern Adventist University and the Seventh-day Adventist Seminary at Andrews University. He is currently a doctoral candidate at George Fox University, an interdenominational Evangelical institution.‖ (http://www.atoday.org/article /1302/news/july-headlines/god-encounters-2012-conference-for-young-adults-will-feature-sam-leonor) 24
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    26. 26.  ―Second, I would like to thank all my brothers and sisters in my George Fox University‗s Leadership in the Emerging Culture, Future Studies doctoral cohort. Our conversations, debates and differences helped form my ideas and guided me along the process. In particular I would like to thank Mark McNees, Timothy Gillespie, Sam Leonor and Kevin Bates for helping me process my thoughts and being a sounding board for what must have been seen as crazy thoughts. You are all friends for life. … Fourth, big props go out to Leonard Sweet and Loren Kerns for helping me redesign my thoughts and to process what I know with what they know.‖ (http://johncokeefe.com/John%20C%20OKeefe%20%20Creatives.pdf) 26
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    28. 28.    ―Anticipate change. Proactive leadership in Google Culture with Len Sweet.‖ ―The Leadership in Emerging Culture Doctor of Ministry (DMin) tracks explore the character and shape of effective Christian leadership in the emerging culture. The … program with Dr. Leonard (Len) Sweet prepares an advance guard of Jesus semioticians, leaders adept at seeing signs of Jesus' work in the world. These followers of Jesus are not afraid of the future but are excited about its possibilities and promises, while aware of its perils and pitfalls.‖ ―The approach is an ancient-future one of MRI (Missional, Relational, Incarnational) discipleship, using an EPIC (Experiential, Participatory, Image-Rich, Connective) interface. Students explore how to transition the church from its current default of APC (Attractional, Propositional, Colonial) to MRI, and play with a variety of EPIC interfaces.‖ (cont.) 28
    29. 29.   Advances ―Students participate in three face-to-face 'advance' experiences in Portland, OR, Oxford, UK, and Orcas Island, WA. They meet for a research course, visit in-person with their advisor, and join Leonard Sweet for a number of learning sessions. Learn more....‖ Online and Hybrid ―The delivery system for the track utilizes a hybrid delivery model. Students participate in several conferences, receive personal mentoring from Dr. Sweet and select faculty advisors, engage in ongoing online interactivity with cohort members and professors, and engage in reading, reflection, research, and writing. Students meet weekly with Len Sweet for synchronous chats in SpotOn3D at an island online learning community called 'Mag Mell'.‖ (http://www.georgefox.edu/seminary/programs/dmin-sfs/index.html) 29
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    32. 32.    ―In the course of this book‘s retrieval of memory, many people have helped me find ‗the overgrown path, the secret staircase, the ancient sewer.‘ Mike Oliver and Chris Eriksen, my graduate assistants at Drew, have thrashed through many thorny thickets in pursuit of ‗secret staircases.‘ …‖ ―Thanks to two of my doctoral cohorts at George Fox University, I was able to determine what wood-felling would give better sight of the trees, and what paths through the woods we need not cut for ourselves. … My colleague and friend Loren Kerns kept my focus on beauty, the ‗forgotten transcendental,‘ and helped me to see beauty‘s relation to the truth of goodness and the goodness of truth.‘ …‖ ―Thanks also to my students: … (LEC 7) Kevin Bates, Karen Claassen, Libby Boatwright, Carla Dyment, Matt Dyment, Tim Gillespie, Sam Leonor, …‖ (http://www.scribd.com/doc/13828591/9/ My-characters-all-sound-the-same-because-I-never-listen-%E2%80%9D2) 32
    33. 33. ―The Christian church is falling apart and in desperate need of a revival. According to Professor Sweet and bestselling author Viola, what is lacking is a groundbreaking revelation of Christ that boggles the mind and enraptures the heart. … The authors urge churches to focus on the man who embodies the entire religion. To do so, readers must learn the subtle distinction between following Christ and realizing Christ already lives within them. Some may find this message controversial, even pantheistic.‖ (http://www.amazon.com/Jesus-Manifesto-RestoringSupremacy-Sovereignty/dp/1596443855/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1322412894&sr=1-1) 33
    34. 34.   ―There are good reasons to be concerned about contemporary Christianity. But must the answer always be ‗a fresh alternative -- a third way‘ (pg. xiii)? In the case of Jesus Manifesto, authors Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola construct a ‗third way‘ that bears little resemblance to the ‗narrow road‘ (Matt. 7:13-14) which Jesus Himself preached.‖ ―[T]he authors begin with a series of sweeping, but predictable, generalizations about the grim state of affairs: ‗The world likes Jesus; they just don't like the church. But increasingly, the church likes the church, yet it doesn't like Jesus‘ (pg. xvi), … This kind of ‗bash the church‘ rhetoric is at the heart of the postmodern, post-evangelical movement, and propels much of what Sweet and Viola unpack. Apparently, for many "emergent" Christians, problems with the church are a license to reconfigure the gospel. And, ultimately, Jesus Manifesto seems determined to do just that.‖ (cont.) 34
    35. 35.   ―Along the way, the authors teeter between sublimity and absurdity. On the one hand, Sweet and Viola do a terrific job pulling everything back to Christ, showing how Scripture and biblical history center around the Son of God and all our causes and convictions should be subordinate to Him. Their language is exultant, their praise effusive. But the closer we examine the Christ they acclaim, the less He seems like the biblical one.‖ ―The ‗hard sayings‘ of Christ about hell, damnation, and judgment are nowhere to be found in this book (unless intimated toward religious elites). As such, the Jesus of Jesus Manifesto is the friend of sinners NOT the ‗judge of the living and the dead‘ (Acts 10:42). The Jesus of Jesus Manifesto comes to bring unity NOT ‗division‘ (Lk. 12:49-57). The Jesus of Jesus Manifesto carries an olive branch NOT a ‗sword‘ (Matt. 10:34). The Jesus of Jesus Manifesto ushers souls to heaven NOT ‗eternal punishment‘ (Matthew 25:32,46).‖ (cont.) 35
    36. 36.   ―It is this ecumenical evasiveness that spoils Jesus Manifesto. The Bible teaches that the Good Shepherd will one day return with ‗the armies of heaven... to strike the nations‘ (Rev. 19: 11-16), that the cross of Christ ‗offends‘ people (Gal. 5:11) and its message is ‗foolishness to those who are perishing‘ (I Cor. 1:18). Sadly, it is this ‗offense‘ that Sweet and Viola jettison in favor of uncritical inclusion.‖ ―One of the ways Jesus Manifesto attempts this is by downplaying ‗doctrine.‘ The authors write, ‗The apostles' message throughout Acts is not the plan of salvation. It's not a theology or a set of doctrines either. It is a person – Christ‘ (pg. 12), and ‗According to Scripture, Jesus Christ (and not a doctrine about Him) is the truth‘ (pg. 80).‖ (cont.) 36
    37. 37.   ―Can theology get in the way of relationship with Christ? Absolutely! Is Jesus more than a doctrinal system? Of course! But the assumption that a doctrine or ‗theological system‘ ALWAYS impedes a relationship with Christ is untenable. On the contrary, good theology fires a right relationship with Jesus. In fact, how does one even ‗grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ‘ (II Pet. 3:18) without embracing a series of biblical prepositions about Him?‖ ―Scripture is filled with exhortations about believing correctly. In fact, it was those same apostles (the ones who [supposedly] did not preach ‗a theology or a set of doctrines‘) who cautioned against ‗false Christ‘s (II Cor. 11:3,4; 13-15) and admonished about a time when men ‗will not endure sound doctrine‘ (II Tim. 4:3). The apostle Peter warned about ‗false teachers‘ who ‗secretly introduce destructive heresies‘ (II Pet. 2:1).‖(http://www.amazon.com/ Jesus-Manifesto-Restoring-Supremacy-Sovereignty/ product-reviews/0849946018/ ref=cm_cr_dp_qt_hist_two?ie=UTF8&filterBy=addTwo Star&showViewpoints=0) 37
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    40. 40.   ―Adventists Against Prop 8″ is an initiative by a small group of Adventist pastors, teachers and students in California who decided, out of their commitment to the historic Adventist principle of the separation of church and state, to voice their concerns about (1) the Seventh-day Adventist Church State Council‘s public support of California Proposition 8 and (2) the imposition of a fundamentally religious definition of marriage that this Proposition represents.‖ ―We are:       Daneen Akers: Reviews Editor, Spectrum Blog; Master of Arts in English student, San Francisco State University; Freelance Writer Ryan Bell: Pastor, Hollywood Seventh-day Adventist Church Alexander Carpenter: Instructor of Visual Arts, Pacific Union College; Editor, Spectrum Blog Stephen Eyer: Adjunct Professor of Film & Visual Art, Pacific Union College; Filmmaker Julius Nam: Associate Professor of Religion, Loma Linda University School of Religion Jared Wright: Master of Divinity student, La Sierra University School of Religion.‖ (cont.) 40
    41. 41.  ―Lawrence T. Geraty, President Emeritus, La Sierra University Tim Mitchell, Senior Pastor, Pacific Union College Church Chris Blake, Associate Professor of English and Communication, Union College Deborah Silva, Professor of Speech Communication, Walla Walla University Fritz Guy, Research Professor of Theology, La Sierra University Michelle Rai, Chair, Communication Dept., Pacific Union College Alger Keough, Executive Pastor, Azure Hills SDA Church, Grand Terrace, CA Gary Chartier, Associate Professor of Law and Business Ethics, La Sierra University David Larson, Professor of Religion, Loma Linda University Jeff Gang, Pastor, Crosswalk Seventh-day Adventist Church, Redlands, CA Charles Scriven, President, Kettering College of Medical Arts Maury Jackson, Associate Pastor, Lancaster (CA) Seventh-day Adventist Church Aubyn Fulton, Professor of Psychology, Pacific Union College Michael McMillan, Pastor, Victoria SDA Church, San Bernardino, CA Sam Leonor, Chaplain, La Sierra University Milbert Mariano, Chair of Visual Arts Dept., Pacific Union College Richard Lee, Associate Pastor, San Diego Korean Seventh-day Adventist Church David Oceguera, Pastor, Brawley & El Centro (CA) Seventh-day Adventist Church John R. Jones, Professor of New Testament and World Religions, La Sierra Univ. Steve Leddy, Lead Pastor, 24-Seven Ministry Center, Seattle, WA‖ (http://adventistsagainstprop8.wordpress.com/about/) 41
    42. 42.  ―United States District Court Judge Vaughn R. Walker overturned Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger, ruling that it violated both the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the United States Constitution. Walker issued an injunction against enforcing Proposition 8 and a stay to determine suspension of his ruling pending appeal. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals continued the stay, keeping Walker's ruling on hold pending appeal. On February 7, 2012, in a 2–1 decision, a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals panel affirmed Walker's decision declaring the Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional.‖ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_8)  “9th Circuit: Prop 8 is Unconstitutional: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals‘ invalidation of 2008′s Proposition 8 is a just, moral, and righteous decision. This is a decision that all Seventh-day Adventists who are committed to religious liberty and the gospel of Jesus Christ can celebrate. It points out unjust and immoral discrimination by its right name. It sets the nation further in the trajectory of recognizing full equality of gays and lesbians in all areas of life. This decision affirms the truth that the moral arc of the universe indeed bends toward justice.‖ (http://adventistsagainstprop8.wordpress.com/2012/02/08/9th-circuit-prop-8-isunconstitutional/) 42
    43. 43. 43
    44. 44.   ―When I came to La Sierra, it was about a month before the elections. In discussing politics, … they were talking about one thing: Proposition 8. It quickly became evident that LSU has several voices willing to engage the theological question, and also willing to push for ethical action on behalf of others. While Gregory King, the dean of the School of Religion at Southern, endorsed ―Adventists for Proposition 8,‖ several faculty members (including Fritz Guy, John R. Jones and Sam Leonor) at La Sierra endorsed ―Adventist Against Prop 8.‖ And while none of these names officially represent their institutions of employment, the fact remains that this demonstrates that the religious and academic leaders at LSU have a different vision for how the Seventh-day Adventist church should relate to LGBTs in their community than those leaders at SAU.‖ ―But it isn‘t just politics. David Ferguson, Fritz Guy and David Larson edited the book Christianity and Homosexuality: Some Seventh-day Adventist Perspectives, in which both John Jones and Fritz Guy argued that the church should not look on all forms of homosexuality as sinful, but should affirm and embrace same-sex couples. … La Sierra University has an atmosphere that allows students to explore questions because the faculty are themselves engaged in dialogue.‖ (Matt Burdette, ―Student Series: Homosexuality and the Adventist Campus - La Sierra,” http://spectrummagazine.org/ blog/2009/03/15/student-series-homosexuality-andadventist-campus-la-sierra) 44
    45. 45.  ―In July 2010, five simple Jesus followers (Alex Bryan, Japhet De Oliveira, Sam Leonor, Tim Gillespie and Terry Swenson) got together … in Denver. … After two days of prayer, fasting, communion and reflection we looked across the room at each other and acknowledged again that Jesus was number one. …‖ (Japhet De Oliveira, ―The One Project: Our Purpose and Mission,‖ http://the1project.org/ assets/documents/the-one-project.pdf)   ―Look, it happened one day in Denver, that we got together, broke and hurting people—people that a lot of people looked at and said; Oh their great, their fine, life is good. But we are hurting and burnt out, and dreaming dreams that we don‘t want to think about anymore, because you just want to put them in a box and hide them cause it hurts to treasure them anymore. And we came together as friends and we really just wanted to escape for a while. …‖ ―And I was so broken and hungry, that I said guys, we‘ve got to open up. … And then it happened. And we said, It happened. And we walked away and said can it get bigger? Can the circle expand? Could it be that we could tear down the walls? I don‘t want to fight the battle anymore! I‘m through! I am tired of seeing members and beautiful people, leaders like you, who crash and burn and die. I‘m tired of seeing honey but it turns to ashes in my mouth. It‘s about Jesus. If people want to march over here, ‗well, we‘re the church,‘ okay fine, but I‘m going to follow Jesus.‖ (Terry Swenson, ―Jesus in our Experience,‖ talk given Feb. 8, 2011, Atlanta One Project; http://the1project.org/media/listen.html) 45
    46. 46. 46
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    48. 48.    ―GODencounters, a series of weekend young adult ‗tune-ups‘ marks a decade of ministry since the initiative began when two Seventh-day Adventist pastors wanted to spruce up a ministry to young adults at a camp meeting. Pastor A. Allan Martin, along with Jeff Gang, founded GODencounters a decade ago in an effort to enhance ministry to young adults who attend Seventh-day Adventist churches.‖ ―In 2001, pastors A. Allan Martin and Jeff Gang found themselves in charge of the young adult break-out groups at Florida Camp Meeting and wondered what they could do to reach beyond the paltry attendance. Most of the attendees were in their 40s and simply wanted airconditioning while waiting for their kids to be let out of Sabbath School. Martin and Gang met with local young adults to pray and seek out what could be done with the opportunity to better reach younger generations.‖ ―That spawned the next year what has now become GODencounters, a weekend series of spiritual gatherings designed for young adults, challenging them to have a 24/7 encounter with Jesus. The series addresses young adult themes such as relationships, worship and service, drawing life lessons from successful biblical characters who encountered challenges similar to those often faced by those out of high school through pre-parenthood.‖ (http://news.adventist.org/en/archive/articles/2012/03/09/godencountersmarks-decade-of-young-adult-ministry) 48
    49. 49.    ―We knew we didn‘t want to perpetuate a faltering program. We wanted to deepen the devotion of new generations to Jesus through worship, so in preparation we spent almost a year gathering with a group of young adults and pastors, praying and dreaming what it might look like. …‖ ―That‘s how GODencounters was born; now it is an international movement with thousands of young adults involved in spiritual gatherings, private faith practices, and affirming communities in real time and online.‖ ―The name itself really presents the core of what we‘ve been trying to do over this past decade: helping young adults encounter God. … So GODencounters is not simply a program, or events you attend, or a religious fad you buy into; it‘s about heart-hunger—new generations seeking out God to discover who he really is.‖ (http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com /2012/09/05/godencounters-still-strong-after-a-decade/) 49
    50. 50.  ―When we first started GODencounters, a couple of young adults who owned an interior design business wanted to contribute their skills to the events. So they asked permission to transform a couple of classrooms into prayer rooms, where young adults could express their prayers in creative and multisensory ways. It‘s been amazing to witness the enthusiasm of young adults with design skills to be involved, and over the years many attendees have expressed that some of their most memorable encounters with God have come in these sacred spaces.‖ (http://ignitionblog. wordpress.com /2012/09/05/godencounters-still-strong-after-a-decade/) 50
    51. 51. 51
    52. 52.  ―Encounters Café was invented because our first GODencounters planning group recognized that the ‗real‘ meeting for young adults often occurs after the program, in the parking lot or at some local restaurant; so we decided to create a place—a café-styled space—for fellowship and conversations to occur informally. Encounters Café creates a casual, comfortable place where young adults are invited to chat, enjoy refreshments, and relax. Inevitably many of the conversations have turned from small talk to discussions about life and God.‖ (http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com/ 2012/09/05/godencounters-still-strong-after-a-decade/)  ―Encounters cafe offers young adults a casual, relaxed spot to enjoy refreshment, worship, and informal conversations with GOD and each other. As part of GODencounters gatherings happening across the nation, look for an encounters cafe to open up near you. … Music, poetry, art, and comedy are familiar staples to the encounters cafe, offering an array of creative expressions of worship.‖ (http://ignitionblog.wordpress.com/2008/03/29/ encounters-cafe/) 52
    53. 53. 53
    54. 54. 54
    55. 55. 55
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    57. 57.   ―The 2012 gathering is schedule for August 30 through September 1 in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas. Organizers announced yesterday that Pastor Sam Leonor, chaplain at La Sierra University, the Seventh-day Adventist institution in Riverside, California, will be the primary speaker this year.‖ ―Leonor ‗is passionate about spiritual awakening among young adults, especially college students,‘ a news release states. ‗He loves to see them bloom into faith that is missional, growing and full of love. He devotes much of his ministry to exploring contemporary Biblical spirituality in the context of community.‘ He ‗loves his work‘ and calls young adults to ‗radical faith that engages culture deeply and emphasizes justice.‘‖ (http://www.atoday.org/article/1302/news/julyheadlines/god-encounters-2012-conference-for-young-adults-will-feature-sam-leonor) 57
    58. 58. 58
    59. 59. 59
    60. 60. 60
    61. 61.    “Created by NAD Adventist. Enjoy this musical montage of the 2012 GODencounters Conference: Be Present. Often distracted by our regrets of the past and worries of the future, we too often fail to be where we are right now. ‗Be Present‘ is a call to enjoy GOD today. Dwell in His presence in the moment. See what He is doing right now, leaving the future and the past in His hands. GODencounters is a movement of next generations pursuing a 24/7 experience of…‖ ―We are a holy movement among new generations who are wholeheartedly seeking a 24/7 experience of GOD, recklessly living for His renown. Daring to deepen intimacy with GOD, GODencounters gives focus to seven discipleship themes where practices of the Christian faith are emphasized. Our desire is to: live lives of Worship; be agents of present Gospel; Gracefully express compassion; Pray without ceasing; embrace Sabbath as soul CPR; Morph into His likeness; celebrate in Jubilee.‖ ―Through holy gatherings and personal devotion, GODencounters is living out this seven-precept discipleship curriculum. In cyberspace and real time, young adults are returning to the heart of GOD, growing a movement of GODfollowers; pursuing GODencountered lives, 24/7.‖ (http://vimeo.com/channels/godencounters/page:1) 61
    62. 62. 62
    63. 63.   ―The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith, and engaging in a process of reorganization. Were this reformation to take place what would result? The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error. A new organization would be established. Books of a new order would be written. A system of intellectual philosophy would be introduced. The founders of this system would go into the cities, and do a wonderful work. The Sabbath, of course would be lightly regarded, as also the God who created it. Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way of the new movement. The leaders would teach that virtue is better than vice, but God being removed they would place their dependence on human power, which, without God, is worthless. Their foundation would be built on the sand, and storm and tempest would sweep away the structure. ― (Battle Creek Letters, pp. 79-81) 63
    64. 64. ―The things you have described as taking place in Indiana, the Lord has shown me would take place just before the close of probation. Every uncouth thing will be demonstrated. There will be shouting, with drums, music, and dancing. The senses of rational beings will become so confused that they cannot be trusted to make right decisions. And this is called the moving of the Holy Spirit.‖ (Ellen G. White to S. N. Haskell, Letter 132, 1900; in Selected Messages, book 2, pp. 36-39) 64

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